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    IFFBoston 2011 Review: 'On the Ice' Falls Through the Cracks

    It’s not often that we see an entire film taking place in the barren wilderness that is Alaska. When there is an Alaska-based movie, it’s usually a horror film manipulating the isolation and constant darkness factors for the ultimate scare. In Andrew Okpeaha Maclean’s “On the Ice,” Alaska is as star...

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    Tribeca Reviews: Best Documentary Winner 'Bombay Beach' & Icelandic Comedy Doc 'Gnarr"

    "Bombay Beach"Well deserved recipient of the Best Documentary award at Tribeca this year, "Bombay Beach" is an incredibly moving portrait of failed economic development and the humanity that continues to persevere even though forgotten in one of the poorest communities in southern California located near the Salton Sea. Three subjects are chosen to represent the community -- the elderly Red, a man who spouts prophetic musings and lives on cigarettes and booze; Cee Jay, a high-school football star dealing with the gang-related death of his cousin and hoping to score a scholarship to make a decent life for himself; and Benny, a young and imagi...

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    Review: 'The Robber' Is A Relentless, Character-Based Thriller

    The following is a reprint of our review that ran during the 2010 New York Film Festival.

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    Review: Takashi Miike's Samurai Picture '13 Assassins' Is His Most Entertaining & Accessible

    The following is a reprint of our review that ran during the 2010 Vancouver Film Festival

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    Review: 'Sympathy for Delicious' Is A Drab, Outdated Drama

    The jittery, just-before-the-film-runs-out-of-the-camera opening title sequence of "Sympathy for Delicious," seems to intentionally (or maybe it's unintentionally) call back the music videos that defined the early '90s grunge rock scene. This makes sense, in a way, because so many of the characters in the film seem to have been drawn out of that particular flannel-shirted milieu. But that's not the thing that makes the sequence so irritating. There's something both arty and offhand about the sequence, in a way that draws attention to itself – it's handmade quality that screams "Hey, look at me!" And it's evocative of the problems with "Sympat...

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    Tribeca Review: Tony Kaye's 'Detachment' Is A Fascinating Mess You Can't Look Away From

    Though it had flown mostly under the radar, cinephiles were pretty thrilled a few weeks ago when the Tribeca Film Festival announced the addition of “Detachment” to its lineup. Not only was the cast top notch but behind the director's chair was British provocateur Tony Kaye, the filmmaker behind the controversial “American History X,” a picture made over 12 years ago. In the interim, things have been tough for the notoriously difficult director and "Detachment" is only his third feature and first narrative film since 1998. "American History X" had its own infamously troubled history when star Edward Norton essentially took over the film, edit...

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    Tribeca Review: 'Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest' Is Engrossing & Real

    Captivating, well-balanced and at times, painfully honest, actor Michael Rapaport's directorial debut, the documentary, "Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest" is much more than a music doc about the seminal '90s hip-hop group; it's an engrossing and moving portrait of brotherhoo...

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    Tribeca Review: 'The Guard' Is Ireland's Acidic Answer To The Buddy Cop Formula

    Sgt. Gerry Boyle is a man of simple pleasures. The unassuming, burly inspector works the unspectacular beat in his quiet, rainy hamlet of Galway, Ireland, wasting the days away alone with his Chet Baker record collection and his afternoons of illicit sex with the prostitutes of Dublin. His identification with police television shows is one of the very few ways he connects with the outside world of what he does, as his menial tasks seem far away from the pavement-slapping action of his colleagues. He's the rarest of movie cops: the one who seems almost offended at the possibility of interrupting his lifestyle for high speed chases or sexy gunf...

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    SFIFF Review: Hong Sang-soo's 'Hahaha' Has Some Pleasant Memories, But Not Much More

    The 54th San Francisco International Film Festival is currently in full swing with 190 films from around the world. Featured amongst the international films at SFIFF is last year’s Un Certain Regard winner “Hahaha,” writer/director Hong Sang-soo’s (“Like You Know It All,” “Night and Day”) 10th featu...

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    Tribeca Review: 'The High Cost Of Living' Can't Afford A Better Plot

    Just how out of touch are some filmmakers? There's a small trend of plots in which the main character commits a truly horrible crime of violent nature (which may even go as far as murder), usually by mistake, and their ultimate next move is to spy on the victim, befriend them, and pretend like nothing ever happened. This premise isn't just borderline offensive (a character tricking their victim for some weird personal catharsis? A writer composing such an artificial scenario just to tug viciously at our hearts?), its banality and self-righteousness basically paints the writer/director as someone who has never had anything remotely similar hap...

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